Construction and Use of Cover Crop Roller for Organic No-Till

Project Overview

Project Type: Farmer
Funds awarded in 2002: $6,275.00
Projected End Date: 12/31/2002
Region: Northeast
State: Pennsylvania
Project Leader:


  • Agronomic: corn, rye
  • Animal Products: dairy


  • Animal Production: manure management
  • Crop Production: conservation tillage
  • Education and Training: farmer to farmer, on-farm/ranch research
  • Natural Resources/Environment: hedges - grass, grass waterways, hedgerows, soil stabilization, wetlands, wildlife, hedges - woody
  • Pest Management: mulches - killed, mulches - living
  • Production Systems: general crop production
  • Soil Management: green manures, organic matter, soil analysis
  • Sustainable Communities: partnerships

    Proposal summary:

    Reducing tillage is better for the soil and the environment, but weed management becomes more of an issue. The farmer will construct a front-mounted roller and experiment with various crimping methods that will allow him to mechanically kill cover crops and plant corn in a single pass. He will field-test a prototype and compare his results with a commercial stalk chopper; he will collect vetch and rye survival counts and see if his prototype gets significant results. He will also compare his results with results from fields under mechanical cultivation. The overall goal is to reduce the time and labor involved in growing organic corn; the results may also be transferable to other crops. Outcomes will be disseminated through field days, a fact sheet, and a web site.

    Any opinions, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed in this publication are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the view of the U.S. Department of Agriculture or SARE.